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It looks like they do more than surf down in San Diego.

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SB LiMotive, a joint company of Bosch and Samsung SDI, fired up the lines at its Ulsan, South Korea lithium-ion battery plant back in January, but with more "volume projects" in the works, the Ulsan facility could struggle to pump out enough batteries to meet rising demand.

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The United States Advanced Battery Consortium LLC (USABC), a research collaboration between Chrysler Group, Ford Motor and General Motors, announced recently that it will award approximately $15.6 million for advanced battery development projects to three automotive supply firms:

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Cobasys, after being offered for sale by its previous owners for over two years has, finally been sold. Energy conversion Devices and Chevron had jointly owned the battery which supplied the energy storage system for the EV1 (pictured) as well as the nickel metal hydride batteries for GM's mild hybrids. The company is now owned by SB Li Motive which is the battery joint venture formed last year by Bosch and Samsung. SB LiMotive was formed to develop lithium ion batteries for automotive applicati

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Electric cars have been with us since the very beginning of the automobile age and from that time until now, its most important component has been the battery. It stores energy chemically until it is needed to create the electricity that powers a vehicle's motor. There have been different types of batteries over the years but none have had the practicality or popularity of the very first rechargeable one, the lead-acid battery.

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Following the report earlier this week about Mercedes-Benz filing a lawsuit against Cobasys regarding its battery contract for the upcoming ML450 Two-Mode hybrid we contact Mercedes for a comment. Mercedes indicated in the suit that lack of funding for Cobasys from its owners (Chevron and Energy Conversion Devices) was threatening the launch of the program. Spokesperson Donna Boland replied that "court filings usually contain the worst case scenario. At this point in time, we're still planning

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Click above to enlarge the Mercedes-Benz ML 450 Hybrid

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var digg_url = 'http://digg.com/environment/Chevron_subsidiary_cancels_contract_for_hybrid_batteries'; Plans for Mercedes to release the ML 450 hybrid in 2009 may very well be canceled. The maker of the nickel metal hydride (NiMH) batteries that was to provide the energy storage component for the SUV, Cobasys, seems to be refusing to begin production of the essential part. It appears the company's parent firms, Chevron (who just posted a $5.98 billion 2nd quarter profit) and Energy Conversion

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While the issue of the nine-thousand recalled batteries from Cobasys remains a bit murky, General Motors may be inclined to just purchase the troubled battery-maker altogether. While we're not entirely sure that another money-losing operation is exactly what GM needs right about now, we can be sure that GM needs those nickel metal hydride batteries for its current range of mild hybrids. Right now, Cobasys is co-owned by Chevron and Energy Conversion Devices, though the two companies have been bi

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Shortly after reports of leaky batteries coming from Cobasys, which greatly slowed the production of GM's mild hybrid vehicles, such as the Saturn Vue and Aura hybrids and Chevy Malibu hybrid, comes a report from Automotive News which suggests that General Motors may just purchase the troubled battery maker outright. That's one way to manage the problem, wouldn't you say? Though GM would own 100-percent of Cobasys, some sort of partnership is said to be in the works, though that other entity rem

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Click the Saturn Vue Hybrid for a high res gallery.

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As much as General Motors would like to sell more hybrids, we'd imagine it would be pretty tough to do so without having the batteries on hand. It turns out that since December of last year, GM has had to recall some nine-thousand battery packs produced by its supplier, Cobasys, which were due for installation in mild hybrid versions of the Chevrolet Malibu, Saturn Vue and Saturn Aura. The culprit was reportedly an internal leak in the pack which caused the entire unit to be inoperable. This set

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General Motors has apparently placed Cobasys on their list of distressed suppliers, a move that could be very bad news for some of GM's hybrid programs. Cobasys is the battery company jointly owned by Energy Conversion Devices and Chevron Technology Ventures. Cobasys supplies the nickel metal hydride batteries used in GM's mild hybrid system in the Saturn Aura and Vue and the Chevy Malibu. They are also one of two supplier teams with development contracts to provide lithium ion battery packs for

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Phone companies may not like to actually provide service to their customers but that doesn't mean they don't have a lot of service vehicles running around. Verizon apparently has the second largest vehicle fleet in North America and in order to save enough money on fuel to hook up three more houses to their FIOS network they are retrofitting some of the vehicles with hybrid systems.

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Click on the photo for a gallery of high-res images of the Lotus EVE demonstrator

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digg_url = 'http://digg.com/hardware/Hybrid_car_batteries_need_a_lot_of_testing_Here_s_how_GM_does_it'; As part of the recent battery technology briefing at the General Motors Technical Center, the attendees were taken on a tour of the hybrid battery test lab. Our group was taken through by lab manager Doug Drauch, who gave us an overview of the activities that take place in the lab. GM has four phases of battery testing with the first phase focusing on individual cells and their performance.

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Just a day after announcing that they would be supplying nickel metal hydride batteries for the upcoming Chevy Malibu hybrid, Cobasys is now up for sale. Cobasys is jointly owned by Energy Conversion Devices and Chevron Technology Ventures. Cobasys also has a partnership with A123 to develop lithium ion battery packs for the Saturn Vue plug-in hybrid program. The owners have hired investment bankers to examine the possibilities for sale, new investment or public offering. If Cobasys-A123 gets th

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The hybrid battery test lab at the GM Technical Center

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